What are some similarities between viruses and bacteria?  

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  • Compared to eukaryotic cells and multicellular organisms, bacteria and viruses are very small. 
  • Both are relatively simpler than eukaryotic cells in terms of their internal organization.
  • Both contain DNA and/ or RNA, a membrane, and signaling molecules embedded in their membranes.
  • Both can infect and cause diseases or disorders in other organisms.
  • Both are relatively more "primitive" than eukaryotes and appeared earlier in the evolution of life.
  • Both can survive extreme conditions that would normally disrupt or destroy a eukaryotic cell.
  • Both are capable of evolving much faster than eukaryotes.
  • Both have very short "lifespans" and reproductive cycles compared to eukaryotes.
  • Neither can reproduce sexually.
  • Neither have a nucleus, and their genetic material is loosely arranged.
  • Both are far more diverse and numerous in population and species than eukaryotes.
  • Both have been repurposed by humans to provide some beneficial function. For example, bacteria produce various consumer goods such as xanthan gum, and viruses can be used to alter an organism genetically by delivering new DNA.
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